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Calling New Authors: Cheerios® Spoonfuls of Stories® Launches Children’s Book Contest!


Cheerios Puts Out Casting Call for Prospective Authors,with Cash Prize, Potential Book Deal for Top Story.

Remember that idea for a children’s book you’ve been working on? The one you’ve written in your head a million times but never actually put down on paper? Well, it’s time to actually write it – and enter it in the Cheerios® Spoonfuls of Stories® Children’s Book Contest.

Starting June 19 and going through Sept. 7, Cheerios is searching for the next great children’s book author by inviting previously unpublished adult authors to submit their story for a children’s book. The story should be suitable for children who are 4 to 8 years old. The winner will have their story reviewed for a potential book deal with Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, and Cheerios will provide cash prizes to the top three finalists. For a complete list of rules, and to submit an entry online, go to

“There is something magical about children’s books and in the past five years, Cheerios Spoonfuls of Stories has spread that magic by distributing more than 25 million books to kids,” said Ricardo Fernandez, marketing manager for Cheerios. “This year, we also want to help support first-time authors, which we hope will lead to more great books that will inspire and entertain children and the adults who read with them.”

This fall, Cheerios is featuring first-time author Jacqui Robbins’ book, The New Girl . . . And Me, as one of five books from Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing free inside boxes of Cheerios cereal. “So many creative, interesting people tell me about the children’s books they’ve always wanted to write,” said Robbins. “Yet the stories never make it to the page, or the writers don’t know how to take the next step toward publication. As a first-time author myself, I hope this contest inspires many would-be writers to put pen to paper and take advantage of a rare opportunity to have a story reviewed by a major children’s publishing company.”

“There are numerous factors in play when we make a decision to publish a children’s book,” said Rubin Pfeffer, publisher of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing. “Above all else, though, we believe in the writer’s voice and the story’s enduring qualities. It truly is exciting to find a memorable story, and we would be delighted if the Cheerios Spoonfuls of Stories contest discovered a new talent to introduce to parents and children.”

Contest Information:

WHAT: Cheerios®Spoonfuls of Stories® Children’s Book Contest
The book should be suitable for children who are 4 to 8 years old. Authors must be 18 years or older. Stories must be in the English language. To obtain a complete list of rules and to submit your original, unpublished story online, go to

WHEN: Deadline for story submission is Sept. 7, 2007. Winners will be announced in January 2008.

JUDGING: Entries will be judged using the following criteria:

1. Appropriate story/content for children ages 4 to 8
2. Emotional Connection
3. Writing Quality
4. Uniqueness
5. Read Aloud Potential

Initial judging will be conducted by the nonprofit First Book, an international literacy organization. The top-ranked stories will be judged by a panel, including editors from Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, who will select a winner and two finalists.

PRIZES: The winner will receive a cash prize of $5,000 and will have his or her story reviewed by a publisher for a potential book deal. Two other finalists will receive cash prizes of $1,000 each. The stories of all prize winners will appear on

The Children’s Book Contest is part of the Cheerios® Spoonfuls of Stories® program to get high quality books into kids’ hands. Over the past five years, Cheerios has donated more than $2 million to First Book (, and has given more than 25 million books to children inside boxes of Cheerios cereal. For more information, see

Cheerios, Honey Nut Cheerios, Frosted Cheerios, MultiGrain Cheerios, Apple Cinnamon Cheerios, Berry Burst Cheerios, Yogurt Burst Cheerios, Fruity Cheerios and Spoonfuls of Stories are trademarks of General Mills.


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